Saturday, January 15, 2005

Wagashi - Japanese Sweets -


I forgot to post these photos from the New Year’s holidays. I took them when my mom and I had some wagashi (Japanese sweets) with maccha (green tea) on Jan. 2nd. We didn’t go through the formal procedures of tea ceremony, because we were so tired from eating osechi ;P

The Chinese character on the brown one means “rooster,” the zodiac of the year 2005. Others are supposed to be a pine cone, sea bream and lotus root. They are all sooooooooo sweet. (I really wonder if anyone has ever tried to find a correlation between the year of practicing tea ceremony and the risk of being diabetic.)

My mom teaches omote-senke tea ceremony. In this school of tea ceremony, you’re not supposed to make too much foam when you mix ground green tea and hot water. The foam shouldn’t cover the entire surface of the tea and the surface of the green tea should show in a crescent-like shape. (This photo is a bit too dark. Sorry.)
I always overdo the mixing, and mom laughs.


Ms One Boobie said...

They all look so cute.. Obachan.. ;) i would love to show them off .. but prolly wouldn't eat it.. coz' it would be too sweet for my liking.. since i'm diabetic.. and it would be such a waste to eat it.. heh! ;)

Reid said...

Hi obachan,

I like taiyaki, but I can never get it freshly made here. What's the filling in the others?

Thess said...

I am admiring the sweets, now wondering how they taste..and what I also find fascinating is the tea ceremony and proper way of preparing/drinking I love to study the japanese culture.

hi again you mind if I link you up?

obachan said...

> MrsTweety --- OH that’s too bad. My dad was diabetic, too and he had to go through a real strict diet. I hope you don’t have to have a hard time like that.

> Reid --- I live taiyaki, too :)
Those tai-shaped and pine-cone shaped ones are rakugan (sugar and rice powder molded in shapes) with no fillings. There are bigger rakugan with anko filling inside, but these are very tiny. The filling in the brown manju is shiroan, I guess, made from maybe white kidney beans???

> Thess --- Of course I don’t mind. Thanks for linking.
I think tea ceremony is one of our cultural assets, but sometimes I feel sorry for those who are involved. Like when I hear about the disliking between different schools. And those people who have no freedom to choose the jobs/spouses because they have to succeed the traditional roles of their families in the school of tea ceremony… Passing down a tradition for hundreds or thousands of years seems to require some sacrifice :(

Ms One Boobie said...

Hey.. Obachan..;)
I'm a very naughty tweet.. and don't follow a strict diet .. which i should.. heh! but i still eat my chocolates and stuff.. but i'm never one for sweet things even before i found out tat i was diabetic.. so i ain't really missing much.. :)

obachan said...

Glad to hear that you can enjoy chocolate! ;)

Ms One Boobie said...

Hey.. Obachan.. :)
Ya.. i'm glad too..tat i can eat some chocolate.. but i swear.. i only got cravings for chocolate.. after i found out that i am diabetic.. lol..!! the mind sure plays some tricks on me.. donch it..??

Anonymous said...

Hello Obachan,
not long ago I have bought two Kashigata moulds. Now I'm searching the net for a wagashi receipe to use this moulds again. Can you help? The Fish & Cone at your photo looks quite delicious!!! Furthermore I am not sure how to prepare the moulds before filling (to prevent the sweets stick to the form). Are there any tricks (lubricate with Oil or fat?). Thank you & best regards


Posted by Joerg

Anonymous said...

I think the kashigata molds are lubricated with mitsu or simple syrup (boil 1 part of water and 1 part sugar for a few minutes until sugar dissolves, then cool and use). The molds are used for a few different types of sweets but I don't have recipes.

obachan said...

I’m no expert, but none of the rakugan recipes I’ve found so far (including the one I emailed to the commenter above) mentioned lubricating the kashigata mold with syrup. Wouldn’t it melt the powdery rakugan mixture to some extent and make it stickier if the mold was lubricated? From the recipes I saw which often mentioned dusting the mold with a little amount of potato starch, I had the feeling that the mold should be very dry, never wet. My hunch is that they may lubricate the mold when making nerikiri (a wagashi with marzipan-like texture) but I’m not sure.

viagra online said...

I love to study the japanese culture.What's the filling in the others?